How The Walking Dead Sneakily Hinted at its Whisperer Spy

The penultimate episode of the first half of The Walking Dead Season 10 ended with a twist when Dante (Juan Javier Cardenas) was forced to murder jefe Siddiq (Avi Nash) after he realized Dante was a member of the Whisperers. Episode 10x07, “Open Your Eyes,” revealed a masked Dante was not only present at the barn where Alpha (Samantha Morton) and the Whisperers decapitated Enid (Katelyn Nacon), Tara (Alanna Masterson) and Kingdom prince Henry (Matt Lintz), but Dante forced Siddiq to watch the murders that left sole survivor Siddiq suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and panic attacks.

The revelation came after a six-episode buildup that gave rise to suspicions Dante was a Whisperer spy. Speculation pointed to Dante subconsciously triggering Siddiq’s panic attacks and flashbacks, and Siddiq only came to this realization after a series of clues peppered throughout “Open Your Eyes.”

When Siddiq and Dante are brought in to the Alexandria jail to treat the prisoner Whisperer (James Parks) captured by Carol (Melissa McBride) and Daryl (Norman Reedus), Dante tells the Whisperer, “Don’t try anything.” It’s only after Dante murders Siddiq that it becomes clear Dante and the Whisperer would recognize one another: as we learned from Alpha’s daughter Lydia (Cassady McClincy), the captured Whisperer plays a key role in the pack as he was tasked with corralling the precious walker horde the Whisperers call “guardians.”

The Whisperer was also present at the barn slayings, as revealed by his exchange with Siddiq. “I know you,” the Whisperer tells a rattled Siddiq. “Look.” This triggers another flashback to the murder of DJ (Matt Mangum), forcing Siddiq to step away and leaving the Whisperer in Dante’s care.

Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) later rushes Siddiq and Dante back to the jail to treat the Whisperer, now shaking in pain and suffering from labored breathing and dilated pupils. Burning up, the Whisperer vomits blood and quickly expires. Siddiq realizes Dante administered what Dante believes was yarrow, a herb meant to treat pain and inflammation. The Whisperer was actually given hemlock, a poisonous plant that can cause muscle pain, rapid and decreased heart rate, paralysis, and heart, lung and kidney failure before death from respiratory failure.

When Siddiq grills Dante about his using hemlock, Dante answers, “I never though hemlock would be in the bag… because you packed it.” Siddiq, whose medical duties have already been affected by his mental health struggles, later admits to Rosita (Christian Serratos) his distracted mistake caused the Whisperer’s death, but it will later become clear Dante knowingly poisoned the Whisperer to prevent being identified.

Siddiq also takes the blame for being unable to determine the source of the sickness spreading throughout Alexandria, most recently claiming the life of Siddiq’s elderly patient Cheryl (Rebecca Koon). Because the sick have nothing in common — they don’t live together, work together, or eat the same things — there’s no common denominator pointing to the cause of illness. He then realizes the illness stems from Alexandria’s water supply, and Siddiq’s suspicions are confirmed when he inspects the water filtration system.

A lever determines if water is drinkable or undrinkable: up for drinkable, down for undrinkable. The lever has been bent upwards to make it appear drinkable, but a twist to its proper setting determines Alexandrians have been consuming unsafe water — water we know was contaminated by Whisperer Gamma (Thora Birch).

Siddiq throws a fit, again interpreting the error as his mistake. The start of the episode put an emphasis on Siddiq treating the sick and giving them water, and we were also shown a distracted Siddiq accidentally let the water overrun when interacting with the finely tuned filter.

It’s only later, when Dante comes to check on Siddiq and apologize, that it’s learned Dante has been distributing the water in the absence of Eugene (Josh McDermitt), who is temporarily residing at Hilltop. “With Eugene gone, I gotta pitch in with the water,” Dante says. “I haven’t pulled my weight.”

To comfort Siddiq, Dante places his hand on his shoulder. Then: tick tok. The clicking noise triggers another flashback to the barn, where Siddiq heard the same noise in his ear when a masked Whisperer forced him to watch his friends be murdered. With the final puzzle piece in place, Siddiq realizes Dante is a Whisperer and a quick scuffle ends with Siddiq choked to death.

0comments

As evidenced by a peek at an upcoming episode, Dante’s deception will be dealt with by Daryl and Carol. The Walking Dead next airs its midseason finale Sunday, Nov. 24 at 9/8c on AMC.

For more TWD intel, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.